Yes, people. I am running out of ways to open this newsletter. So, I went with ‘Yes, People.’ I’m not yessing anything in particular. Just affirming, I guess.
I’m not cheap. I just think I have odd taste. Okay, maybe I’m a little cheap but if you don’t buy nice shit you don’t have to be heartbroken when it gets fucked up or lost or stolen or turns out to be cheap. I’ll get to the point. I threw out all of my old patio furniture because it was breaking and weather beaten Ikea stuff I’ve had for decade. It was embarrassing. If it wasn’t all breaking, I could’ve pushed it off as cool and almost antique but those weird hex keyed bolts that hold that shit together is a give away -- that and the breaking. It just looked like scary, dirty old garbage furniture that you didn’t want to sit on. So, my deck has been empty except for three scattered mismatched chairs, the ones that weren’t breaking. It looked kind of minimal but there’s a fine line between minimal and sad.
I looked at a bunch of patio stuff online. It’s always my first instinct to just replace what I had. That’s the easiest thing to do. Of course I was looking at the end of summer so there wasn’t a lot available. I looked at some fancier stuff and it just looked like run of the mill patio stuff. I like wood. I like it not to be too ornate. Then it hit me. I need a picnic. I need and old style, shitty, side of the road, campsite-style picnic table. That is the most practical thing and it would look cool. I kept telling myself that a picnic table would be hip. I was thinking out loud about it and on my birthday my girlfriend had one delivered. I had a fully-assembled, unpainted pine picnic table on my deck. Over the weekend I decided it needed to be stained red for it to have that classic campsite, roadside look, so we stained it red. Yes! I now have a red picnic table on my deck and three mismatched re-stained Ikea chairs and it is exactly what I wanted. I think I’ll invest in a nice umbrella. That will just make it perfect. Maybe not, though. Maybe I’ll leave it just like it is and I’ll pitch a tent out there. Camping.
Interesting shows this week. On Monday, I talk to Aaron Draplin. His company, Draplin Design Co., is pretty fucking groovy. I can’t remember how we were introduced but he’s an intense, self-made dude that makes cool shit. I wanted to talk to him. It seems out of my wheelhouse but it was great and I learned about someone else's passion for something I could understand but knew nothing about. On Thursday, I talk to the legendary record engineer, Steve Albini. Don’t call him a producer, he doesn’t like that. Even though he had his hands and fingers on the mixing board for some the best records ever he still sees himself as just an engineer there to make the band sound how they want to sound. Intense guy. Great talk.